Naperville Lawyer Emphasizes the Importance of an Estate Plan

estate planning, estate plan, Naperville Estate Planning AttorneyYou have worked hard throughout the years and have acquired real estate, investments, artwork, jewelry, family heirlooms, and other items that are important to you. The question now is: what will you do with them? Will you pass specific items down to specific family members or evenly divide your assets among them? Maybe you will opt to give everything away to an organization or group you are passionate about. Many of my clients have expressed some discomfort in regard to thinking about what will happen after their death, but speaking with an estate planning attorney can help you alleviate worries about what will happen to the assets in your estate after you have passed away.

What is an Estate Plan?

Estate planning is important for anyone who owns property or has dependents. A study of more than 20,000 people over the age of 50 every two years by the National Institute on Aging showed that many Americans do not have a will. When you pass away, your estate does not immediately go to your family if you do not have a will or estate plan. The state will play a significant role in deciding what will happen with your assets.

Estate plans go beyond just having a will, however. An estate plan can help you establish legal directions for who will take care of your dependents, if they are still minors or disabled and/or living with you, who will receive specific items in your estate, how your assets will be divided, and who will make any medical or financial decisions if you are unable to. Medical concerns, such as a Do Not Resuscitate (DNR) order, may also be included your estate plan so your family can better understand your desires in making those decisions.

In cases where individuals or couples do not have family or they do not wish to pass any of their estate on to their family members, an estate plan may be even more crucial. Many in such a situation decide to divide their assets among different organizations or non-family individuals with whom they have built a relationship. Having an estate plan will ensure that your assets are distributed to people or organizations of your choosing rather than risk the possibility of them being sold or allocated to someone else.

Working With an Estate Planning Attorney

Regardless of your current age, making an estate plan is important. Once it is made, it is easy to update if anything changes, and it gives you the knowledge and comfort that your wishes will be carried out after you pass away. This may be especially true in cases involving minor children or a disabled child of any age. Making an estate plan and including directives regarding where your children will live and how they will be cared for can be invaluable.

If you have dependents, own property, or are nearing retirement, you should contact a Naperville estate planning attorney. The experienced team at the Gierach Law Firm will help you develop a customized estate plan or update an existing one. Attorney Denice Gierach has more than 30 years of professional legal experience and is ready to put her skill and knowledge to work for your family. Call today to schedule an appointment.